American Idol (season 16)

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American Idol
American Idol ABC logo.png
Season 16
Broadcast from March 11 (2018-03-11) – May 21, 2018
Judges
Host(s) Ryan Seacrest
Broadcaster ABC
Winner
Maddie Poppe
Maddie Poppe, winner of American Idol 2018.jpg
Origin Clarksville, Iowa
Song "Going Going Gone"
Genre(s) Pop, Folk
Runner-up
Caleb Lee Hutchinson
Chronology

The sixteenth season of American Idol premiered on March 11, 2018, on the ABC television network. It is the show's first season to air on ABC, after 15 years on Fox. Ryan Seacrest continued his role as the show's host, while Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie joined as judges. Maddie Poppe from Clarksville, Iowa won the season on May 21, 2018, while her boyfriend Caleb Lee Hutchinson was runner-up. Poppe was the first female winner since Candice Glover in season twelve.

Background[edit]

In early 2017, Variety reported that FremantleMedia was in talks to revive the show for NBC or for its original network, Fox.[1] A dispute between Fremantle and Core Media Group derailed these plans.[2]

Then, in May 2017, it was announced that ABC was making a bid to revive the program.[3] Later, ABC announced that it had acquired the rights to the series, and that American Idol would return for the 2017–18 television season.[4][5] On November 6, 2017, it was announced that the revival season would premiere on March 11, 2018.[6]

On July 20, 2017, it was announced on Live with Kelly and Ryan, that Ryan Seacrest would be returning as the host for the revival season.[7]

On May 16, 2017, Katy Perry was the first judge to be announced by ABC.[8] On September 24, 2017, Luke Bryan was the second judge to be announced for the revival season.[9] On September 29, 2017, Lionel Richie was the third and final judge to be announced.[10]

On February 21, 2018, it was announced that iHeartRadio radio personality Bobby Bones would be the mentor for the Top 24 this season.[11]

Radio Disney is broadcasting its first season of American Idol Insider.[citation needed]

On April 23, 2018, ABC announced that the April 29, May 6, and May 13 live shows of the season would air across all mainland U.S. time zones, a first for American Idol.[12]

Regional auditions[edit]

In June 2017, it was announced that American Idol would begin two bus tours in 19 cities, later increased to 22, for audition starting August 17, 2017.[13][14] Those who passed their first audition would go in front of the producers where they would be selected to appear before the judges in different cities. Instead of focusing on a city in each aired episode as in previous seasons, this season each episode showed a compilations of auditions from different cities.[15]

Episodes City Date Venue
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 New York City October 3–4, 2017 Madison Square Garden[16]
2, 4, 5 New Orleans, Louisiana October 14, 2017 Mardi Gras World[17]
1, 3, 4, 5 Nashville, Tennessee October 19–20, 2017 Country Music Hall of Fame
2, 3, 5 Savannah, Georgia October 28–29, 2017 Kehoe Iron Works
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Los Angeles, California November 16–17, 2017 Hollywood and Highland Center[18]

During the live broadcast of the 2017 American Music Awards, three contestants who did not pass the audition in front of the judges were given one more chance to allow the public to vote for them.[19] The three candidates were Maris, Britney Holmes and Dominique Smith. The winner of the golden ticket to Hollywood was then revealed the following night on an episode of Dancing with the Stars. Lionel Richie appeared in the show announcing that the public vote was in favor of Britney Holmes, a 28-year-old vocal coach from Texas, who is headed to Hollywood as the first declared semifinalist of the season.[20]

Hollywood Week[edit]

Hollywood Week aired over two episodes on March 26 and April 1. It featured three rounds: Lines of 10, Group Round, and Solo Round. In the first round, each contestant sang individually, and after ten sang, they gathered in a line. Those who impressed the judges and the producers advanced to the next round where the contestants performed in groups of four or five, singing a song together.[21] The remaining auditionees who passed the group rounds performed their final solos to advance in the Showcase Round.

Showcase Round[edit]

The Showcase Round aired on April 2, which featured the top 50 performing for the judges and a live audience at Exchange LA, a nightclub in Los Angeles. The following day, the judges narrowed the number of contestants down from 50 to 24 in the Final Judgement. The top 24 contestants then moved on to perform solos and celebrity duets.[22][23][24]

The following is a list of the contestants who reached the Top 24 and the song they performed at the Showcase:

Color key:

       Male contestant          Female contestant
Order Contestant Age Hometown Audition city Song[22][23][24]
1 Layla Spring 16 Marion County, Kentucky Nashville, Tennessee "Proud Mary"
2 Michael J. Woodard 20 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Los Angeles, California "You Oughta Know"
3 Gabby Barrett 17 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania New York City "Church Bells"
4 Michelle Sussett 22 Miami, Florida Los Angeles, California "24K Magic"
5 Dominique 26 Birmingham, Alabama New Orleans, Louisiana "Landslide"
6 Trevor McBane 22 Savanna, Oklahoma New Orleans, Louisiana "Wake Me Up"
7 Maddie Poppe 20 Clarksville, Iowa New York City "Me and Bobby McGee"
8 Ron Bultongez 21 Plano, Texas New York City "All I Want"
9 Alyssa Raghu 16 Orlando, Florida Los Angeles, California "Every Breath You Take"[25]
10 Catie Turner 17 Langhorne, Pennsylvania New York City "Bad Romance"
11 Jurnee 18 Denver, Colorado Savannah, Georgia "Never Enough"
12 Shannon O'Hara 17 Mooresville, North Carolina Savannah, Georgia "Unconditionally"
13 Kay Kay 18 Nashua, New Hampshire New York City "Brokenhearted"
14 Amelia Hammer Harris 26 Lexington, Kentucky Savannah, Georgia "Paint It Black"
15 Brandon Diaz 21 Ashburn, Virginia Los Angeles, California "Let's Get It On"
16 Adam Sanders (as Ada Vox) 24 San Antonio, Texas Savannah, Georgia "Creep"
17 Jonny Brenns 18 St. Augustine, Florida Savannah, Georgia "Lay Me Down"
18 Mara Justine 15 Galloway Township, New Jersey New York City "Something's Got a Hold on Me"
19 Caleb Lee Hutchinson 18 Dallas, Georgia Savannah, Georgia "I Was Wrong"
20 Garrett Jacobs 18 Bossier City, Louisiana New Orleans, Louisiana "Knock on Wood"
21 Cade Foehner 21 Shelbyville, Texas Savannah, Georgia "No Good"
22 Effie Passero 26 Modesto, California Los Angeles, California "The Dance"
23 Marcio Donaldson 28 Compton, California Los Angeles, California "If You Really Love Me"
24 Dennis Lorenzo 26 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania New York City "A Song for You"

Top 24[edit]

The Top 24 contestants were split into two groups of twelve. Prerecorded performances at the Academy in the Heart of LA of the first group aired on April 8 and the second group on April 15. On the following day each week, prerecorded performances of each contestant's duet aired, as did the judges' selection of seven contestants from each group to advance to the Top 14. Idol contestants were paired with celebrity singers as their duet partners. The artists who duetted with the Top 24 included: Banners, Aloe Blacc, Bishop Briggs, Cam, Colbie Caillat, Luis Fonsi, Andy Grammer, Lea Michele, Patrick Monahan, Rachel Platten, Bebe Rexha, Sugarland, and Allen Stone.[26]

Color key:

       Contestant was chosen by the judges to move on to the live shows
       Contestant was eliminated

Group 1[edit]

Date of airing[27][28] Order Contestant Song[29][30] Duet partner[30] Result
Sunday, April 8 1 Dominique "Ain't Nobody" N/A N/A
2 Layla Spring "A Broken Wing" N/A N/A
3 Catie Turner "Call Me" N/A N/A
4 Dennis Lorenzo "Rude" N/A N/A
5 Michelle Sussett "If I Were a Boy" N/A N/A
6 Michael J. Woodard "Golden Slumbers" N/A N/A
7 Trevor McBane "Way Down We Go" N/A N/A
8 Jonny Brenns "Georgia" N/A N/A
9 Kay Kay "Love on the Brain" N/A N/A
10 Brandon Diaz "Hello" N/A N/A
11 Gabby Barrett "My Church" N/A N/A
12 Cade Foehner "All Along the Watchtower" N/A N/A
Monday, April 9 1 Catie Turner "Good to Be Alive (Hallelujah)" Andy Grammer Advanced
2 Cade Foehner "Never Tear Us Apart" Bishop Briggs Advanced
3 Layla Spring "Stuck Like Glue" Sugarland Eliminated
4 Dominique "Wake Me Up" Aloe Blacc Eliminated
5 Brandon Diaz "Despacito" Luis Fonsi Eliminated
6 Kay Kay "Drive By" Patrick Monahan Eliminated
7 Trevor McBane "River" Bishop Briggs Eliminated
8 Michelle Sussett "I Can't Make You Love Me" Luis Fonsi Advanced
9 Jonny Brenns "Back Home" Andy Grammer Advanced
10 Dennis Lorenzo "Unaware" Allen Stone Advanced
11 Michael J. Woodard "Angel in Blue Jeans" Patrick Monahan Advanced
12 Gabby Barrett "Stay" Sugarland Advanced

Group 2[edit]

Date of airing[31][32] Order Contestant Song[33][34] Duet partner[34] Result
Sunday, April 15 1 Amelia Hammer Harris "Believer" N/A N/A
2 Garrett Jacobs "Treat You Better" N/A N/A
3 Maddie Poppe "Brand New Key" N/A N/A
4 Ada Vox "Feeling Good" N/A N/A
5 Caleb Lee Hutchinson "Die a Happy Man" N/A N/A
6 Effie Passero "Barracuda" N/A N/A
7 Alyssa Raghu "Stay" N/A N/A
8 Marcio Donaldson "Inseparable" N/A N/A
9 Mara Justine "Run to You" N/A N/A
10 Jurnee "Flashlight" N/A N/A
11 Shannon O'Hara "All I Ask" N/A N/A
12 Ron Bultongez "Dancing On My Own" N/A N/A
Monday, April 16 1 Caleb Lee Hutchinson "Meant to Be" Bebe Rexha Advanced
2 Ada Vox "Defying Gravity" Lea Michele Advanced
3 Maddie Poppe "Bubbly" Colbie Caillat Advanced
4 Ron Bultongez "Someone to You" Banners Eliminated
5 Amelia Hammer Harris "Me, Myself & I" Bebe Rexha Eliminated
6 Shannon O'Hara "Burning House" Cam Eliminated
7 Alyssa Raghu "Yellow" Banners Eliminated
8 Marcio Donaldson "What's Going On" Allen Stone Advanced
9 Jurnee "Run to You" Lea Michele Advanced
10 Garrett Jacobs "Lucky" Colbie Caillat Advanced
11 Mara Justine "Fight Song" Rachel Platten Advanced
12 Effie Passero "Diane" Cam Eliminated

Live shows[edit]

Color key:

       Contestant was saved by America's vote
       Contestant was eliminated

Week 1: Top 14 (April 22 and 23)[edit]

The Top 14 performances were taped on April 21, 2018, and aired on Sunday, April 22, followed with the live results on Monday, April 23.[citation needed]

Color key:

       Contestant received the top six highest amount of votes and directly advanced to the Top 10
       Contestant was not chosen by the public and was left to perform again for the judges
       Contestant was immune from elimination and performed a "victory song"
       Contestant was chosen by the judges to advanced to the Top 10
       Contestant was eliminated
Date of airing Order Contestant Song[35] Result
Sunday, April 22 1 Caleb Lee Hutchinson "Midnight Train to Memphis" Advanced
2 Michelle Sussett "Friends" Not Chosen
3 Marcio Donaldson "It's a Miracle" Not Chosen
4 Mara Justine "This Is Me" Not Chosen
5 Garrett Jacobs "Raging Fire" Not Chosen
6 Ada Vox "The Show Must Go On" Not Chosen
7 Catie Turner "Take Me to Church" Advanced
8 Cade Foehner "Black Magic Woman" Advanced
9 Dennis Lorenzo "In My Blood" Not Chosen
10 Maddie Poppe "Homeward Bound" Advanced
11 Jurnee "Bang Bang" Not Chosen
12 Jonny Brenns "This Is Gospel" Not Chosen
13 Michael J. Woodard "Titanium" Advanced
14 Gabby Barrett "The Climb" Advanced
Monday, April 23 1 Maddie Poppe "Walk Like an Egyptian" Immune
2 Michelle Sussett "I'm a Dreamer" (original song) Judges' choice
3 Marcio Donaldson "Jealous" Eliminated
4 Cade Foehner "Bright Lights" Immune
5 Garrett Jacobs "Have You Ever Seen the Rain?" Eliminated
6 Gabby Barrett "Little Red Wagon" Immune
7 Dennis Lorenzo "This Woman's Work" Judges' choice
8 Jonny Brenns "Demons" Eliminated
9 Caleb Lee Hutchinson "Gettin' You Home" Immune
10 Mara Justine "Love on the Brain" Eliminated
11 Jurnee "Never Enough" Judges' choice
12 Michael J. Woodard "Believe In Yourself" Immune
13 Catie Turner "Havana" Immune
14 Ada Vox "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" Judges' choice

Week 2: Top 10 – Disney Night (April 29)[edit]

The Top 10 performed Disney songs on Sunday, April 29, 2018. Idina Menzel served as a guest mentor.[36]

Order Contestant Song[37] Result
1 Maddie Poppe "The Bare Necessities" Safe
2 Jurnee "How Far I'll Go" Safe
3 Cade Foehner "Kiss the Girl" Safe
4 Ada Vox "Circle of Life" Eliminated
5 Michelle Sussett "Remember Me" Eliminated
6 Gabby Barrett "Colors of the Wind" Safe
7 Michael J. Woodard "Beauty and the Beast" Safe
8 Caleb Lee Hutchinson "You've Got a Friend in Me" Safe
9 Catie Turner "Once Upon a Dream" Safe
10 Dennis Lorenzo "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" Eliminated
Non-competition performance
Order Performers Song
15.1 Katy Perry and the Top 10 "When You Wish Upon a Star"

Week 3: Top 7 – Prince/Birth Year Night (May 6)[edit]

The Top 7 performed tribute performances to the late Prince and songs from their birth years.[38] Nick Jonas served as a guest mentor.

Contestant Order Prince Song Order Birth Year Song Result
Jurnee 1 "Kiss" 11 "Back at One" Eliminated
Gabby Barrett 10 "How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore?" 2 "I Hope You Dance" Safe
Michael J. Woodard 3 "I Would Die 4 U" 8 "My Heart Will Go On" Safe
Cade Foehner 9 "Jungle Love" 4 "Who Will Save Your Soul" Safe
Catie Turner 12 "Manic Monday" 5 "Oops!... I Did It Again" Eliminated
Caleb Lee Hutchinson 14 "When Doves Cry" 6 "Amazed" Safe
Maddie Poppe 7 "Nothing Compares 2 U" 13 "If It Makes You Happy" Safe

Week 4: Top 5 – Carrie Underwood/Mothers' Day Dedications (May 13)[edit]

The Top 5 performed songs by Carrie Underwood and songs dedicated to their mothers. Underwood served as mentor for the week and performed with the contestants.

Contestant Order Carrie Underwood Song Order Mother's Day Song Result
Michael J. Woodard 1 "Flat on the Floor" 8 "Still I Rise" Eliminated
Gabby Barrett 2 "Last Name" 6 "I Have Nothing" Safe
Cade Foehner 3 "Undo It" 7 "Simple Man" Eliminated
Caleb Lee Hutchinson 4 "So Small" 9 "Stars in Alabama" Safe
Maddie Poppe 5 "I Told You So" 10 "God Only Knows" Safe
Non-competition performances
Order Performer(s) Song
17.1 Carrie Underwood and the Top 5 "See You Again"
17.2 Carrie Underwood "Cry Pretty"

Week 5: Finale – Winner's Song/Reprise Song/Hometown Dedication (May 20 and 21)[edit]

The Top 3 performed their winner’s song, a reprise of their favorite performance of the season and a song dedicated to their hometowns, which they visited. Bobby Bones returned as mentor this week.

Contestant Order Winner's Song Order Reprise Song Order Hometown Dedication Result
Caleb Lee Hutchinson 1 "Johnny Cash Heart" 4 "Don't Close Your Eyes" 7 "Folsom Prison Blues" Runner-up
Gabby Barrett 2 "Rivers Deep" 5 "Little Red Wagon" 8 "Don't Stop Believin'" 3rd Place
Maddie Poppe 3 "Going Going Gone" 6 "Don't Ever Let Your Children Grow Up"
(original song)
9 "Landslide" Winner
Non-competition performances
Order Performer(s) Song [39]
18.1 Harper Grace "Yard Sale" (original song)
18.2 Jonny Brenns "Blue Jeans" (original song)
18.3 Michelle Sussett "I'm a Dreamer" (original song)
18.4 Catie Turner "21st Century Machine" (original song)
19.1 Lionel Richie with the Top 10 "All Night Long (All Night)"
19.2 Nick Jonas and DJ Mustard "Anywhere"
19.3 Nick Jonas with Jurnee "Jealous"
19.4 Luke Bryan "Sunrise, Sunburn, Sunset"
19.5 Luke Bryan with Gabby Barrett "Most People Are Good"
19.6 Gary Clark Jr. with Cade Foehner & Dennis Lorenzo "Bright Lights"
19.7 Kermit the Frog with Maddie Poppe "Rainbow Connection"
19.8 Darius Rucker with Caleb Lee Hutchinson "Wagon Wheel"
19.9 Bebe Rexha with the Top 3 "Meant to Be"
19.10 Layla Spring and her sister Dyxie with LeAnn Rimes "Blue"
19.11 Katy Perry with Catie Turner "Part of Me"
19.12 Yolanda Adams with Michael J. Woodard "What the World Needs Now Is Love"
19.13 Caleb Lee Hutchinson and Maddie Poppe "Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World"
19.14 Patti LaBelle with Ada Vox "Lady Marmalade"
19.15 Maddie Poppe "Going Going Gone"

Elimination chart[edit]

Color key:

Females Males Top 24 Not Chosen Third place Runner-up Winner
Did Not Perform Public's vote Judge's save Immune Eliminated
Results per stage
Stage: Top 24 Live shows
Group 1 Group 2 Top 14 Wildcard Top 10 Top 7 Top 5 Finale
Date: 4/9 4/16 4/22 4/23 4/29 5/6 5/13 5/21
Place Contestant Result
1 Maddie Poppe Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Safe Safe Winner
2 Caleb Lee Hutchinson Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Safe Safe Runner-up
3 Gabby Barrett Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Safe Safe 3rd place
4–5 Cade Foehner Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Safe Eliminated
Michael J. Woodard Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Safe Eliminated
6–7 Jurnee Top 14 Not Chosen Safe Safe Eliminated
Catie Turner Top 14 Safe Immune Safe Eliminated
8–10 Dennis Lorenzo Top 14 Not Chosen Safe Eliminated
Michelle Sussett Top 14 Not Chosen Safe Eliminated
Ada Vox Top 14 Not Chosen Safe Eliminated
11–14 Jonny Brenns Top 14 Not Chosen Eliminated
Marcio Donaldson Top 14 Not Chosen Eliminated
Garrett Jacobs Top 14 Not Chosen Eliminated
Mara Justine Top 14 Not Chosen Eliminated
15–24 Ron Bultongez Eliminated
Amelia Hammer Harris Eliminated
Shannon O'Hara Eliminated
Effie Passero Eliminated
Alyssa Raghu Eliminated
Kay Kay Alexis Eliminated
Brandon Diaz Eliminated
Trevor McBane Eliminated
Dominique Posey Eliminated
Layla Spring Eliminated

Reception[edit]

Ratings[edit]

No. Title Air date Time slot (ET) Rating/share
(18-49)
Viewers
(millions)
DVR
(18-49)
DVR viewers
(millions)
Total
(18-49)
Total viewers
(millions)
1 "Auditions, Part 1" March 11, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 2.3/8 10.48[40] 0.4 1.35 2.7 11.84[41]
2 "Auditions, Part 2" March 12, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.8/7 8.41[42] 0.4 1.36 2.2 9.77[43]
3 "Auditions, Part 3" March 18, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.8/6 7.81[44] 0.4 1.38 2.2 9.19[43]
4 "Auditions, Part 4" March 19, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.6/6 7.68[45] 0.5 1.94 2.1 9.59[46]
5 "Auditions, Part 5" March 25, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.7/6 7.51[47] 0.5 N/A 2.2 N/A[46]
6 "Hollywood Week, Part 1" March 26, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.7/6 7.80[48] 0.3 1.33 2.0 9.14[49]
7 "Hollywood Week, Part 2” April 1, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.6/6 7.48[50] 0.5 1.42 2.1 8.90[49]
8 "Showcase Round & Final Judgment” April 2, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.4/5 7.16[51] 0.4 1.53 1.8 8.69[52]
9 "Top 24 Solos, Part 1” April 8, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.5/6 7.23[53] 0.4 1.32 1.8 8.55[52]
10 "Top 24 Celebrity Duets, Part 1” April 9, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.6/6 7.72[54] 0.3 1.39 1.9 9.11[55]
11 "Top 24 Solos, Part 2” April 15, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.3/5 6.35[56] 0.4 1.28 1.7 7.63[55]
12 "Top 24 Celebrity Duets, Part 2” April 16, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.4/5 6.97[57] 0.2 1.15 1.6 8.12[58]
13 "Top 14 Perform” April 22, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.5/6 7.46[59] 0.3 1.24 1.8 8.71[58]
14 "Top 10 Reveal” April 23, 2018 Monday 8:00 p.m. 1.4/5 7.61[60] 0.2 1.14 1.6 8.77[61]
15 "Top 10 Perform: Disney Night” April 29, 2018 Sunday 8:00 p.m. 1.9/7 8.77[62] 0.5 1.18 2.4 9.95[61][63]
16 "Top 7 Perform” May 6, 2018 1.8/7 8.65[64] N/A N/A N/A N/A
17 "Top 5 Perform” May 13, 2018 1.7/7 8.53[65] 0.3 1.23 2.0 9.76[66]
18 "Performance Finals” May 20, 2018 1.3/5 7.47[67] N/A N/A N/A N/A
19 "Grand Finale” May 21, 2018 Monday 9:00 p.m. 1.6/6 8.63[68] 0.3 1.27 1.9 9.95[69]

Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the premiere episode holds an approval rating of 70% based on 20 reviews, with an average rating of 6.51/10.[70] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the season a score of 60 out of 100 based on eight reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews."[71]

Contestants who appeared on other shows or previous seasons[edit]

Concert tour[edit]

References[edit]

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